New Sustainable Farming Incentive is welcome news for the rural sector

23 May 2024

rural landscape

A welcome piece of news has come from the government who have announced the new Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) which comes onstream in July and for which details were published this week.

The announcement confirms that the expanded SFI will be open to new entrants for the first time and will initially comprise 102 actions and include over 20 new options to support more sustainable food production. There will be payments for precision farming, agroforestry, a new and expanded offer for upland farmers and more actions for tenants on short-term contracts.

Also included are actions to mitigate flood risk and promote business resilience to our changing climate and weather.

50 actions from the Countryside Stewardship Mid-Tier will also be merged into the SFI, it was announced.

Peter Harker, Partner and head of Natural Capital within the firm’s Land and Rural Practice Group, commented:

“The inclusion of new entrants in the SFI is really good news as is expanding the scope of support to be more attractive to tenant farmers, as well as more generally streamlining the application process.

“For new entrants or those re-shaping their businesses there will clearly be beneficial implications for cashflow once the new payments come on stream.

“We should also look at how the SFI and extension to the availability of Agricultural Property Relief (APR) to land management schemes announced from April 2025 might dovetail.

“Resilience is a much-used word across the sector at the moment – financial resilience is paramount also and these measures would appear to support that.”

For any queries on the SFI, please contact Peter Harker.

Contact Us

Peter Harker
Partner, London

Key experience

Peter specialises in Landed Estates and manages client portfolio which includes wealthy individuals, owner managed businesses, agribusiness and not-for-profit entities.